[challenge accepted] palindromic prime number of 5 digits

Thanks to the first comment in the last post which directed me to a math problem (http://contestcoding.wordpress.com/2013/03/22/palindromic-primes/) . From a scientist point of view, the answer itself, 98689, is just simple, but the way to answer it is kind of interesting. Let’s have a look at it step by step how a scientist solved it.

1. How to generate a list of palindromic number?

‘A palindromic number is a number that reads the same backwards as forwards (1991 for example).’ One can iterate in all numbers and check if it is palindromic:


, or, a smarter way to generate them [1]:

from itertools import product

def palindromeNum(n):
   return [n*'%s'%tuple(list(i)+list(i[n*(n-1)/2%(n-1)-1::-1])) for i in product(*([range(1,10)]+[range(0,10)]*((n+1)/2-1)))]

2. Now we have a list of palindromic number, how do we determine it is a prime or not?

Simple. The is_prime() function from textbooks should work with no problem. One can loop from 2 to the square root of N and see if it can divide N. Let me introduce you a better way, Miller Rabin primality test, a pro’s way.

wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller%E2%80%93Rabin_primality_test

In general, it is a faster and more efficient way to test if a number is a prime. Some other methods can be AKS primality test (wikipedia) and so on. It is good to know them 🙂

There is a nice implementation of Miller Rabin in python here, one can have a look at this beautiful algorithm.

So, we can build a loop from the end of the list of palindromic number that we generated at step 1, and test each of them using Miller Rabin primality test, we can easily find the number is 98689.

3. Some additional thoughts

  • The problem asked about 5 digits palindromic number. Also, these kind of numbers exist for 3 digits, 7 digits, 9 digits and so on, but never exist for 4 digits, 6 digits. Can you guess why? hint: some thing about number 11.
  • There is a nice website http://oeis.org/A114835 for the set of palindrome prime numbers. There are some other interesting sets of numbers.
  • Do you know the largest 11 digits palindromic number is 99999199999, 13 digits 9999987899999?

Source code:

Actually the function palindromeNum() can be optimized by generator and yield, which does real time calculation rather than unnecessarily generating the whole list.

from itertools import product
import miller_rabin

def palindromeNum(n):
 return [n*'%s'%tuple(list(i)+list(i[n*(n-1)/2%(n-1)-1::-1])) for i in product(*([range(1,10)]+[range(0,10)]*((n+1)/2-1)))]

for i in palindromeNum(5)[::-1]:
 if miller_rabin.miller_rabin(int(i)):
 print i

A scientist’s ‘attitude’

Source code and data file can be found at https://github.com/phunterlau/attitude info me before use it, please.

You might have heard of this piece of junk about ‘attitude’ for many times, now a real scientist is showing you the secret behind this.

First of all, it is like this:

A small truth to make our Life 100% successful.. ……..

If A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Is equal to 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26

Then H+A+R+D+W+O+ R+K = 8+1+18+4+23+ 15+18+11 = 98%

K+N+O+W+L+E+ D+G+E = 11+14+15+23+ 12+5+4+7+ 5 = 96%

L+O+V+E=12+15+ 22+5=54%

L+U+C+K = 12+21+3+11 = 47%

(None of them makes 100%)
………… ……… ……… .
Then what makes 100%
Is it Money? ….. No!!!!!
Leadership? …… NO!!!!

Every problem has a solution, only if we perhaps change our “ATTITUDE”.
It is OUR ATTITUDE towards Life and Work that makes
OUR Life 100% Successful..

A+T+T+I+T+U+ D+E = 1+20+20+9+20+ 21+4+5 = 100%

Well, it might be true. But, is ‘attitude’ the only word which can make 100%? Let’s have a look.

What you need is python and a list of English words. I have done some google search and found this nice site of a list of 109582 English words: http://www-01.sil.org/linguistics/wordlists/english/ .

Open this list with python, and type in this piece of code:

print ‘,’.join([x.strip() for x in words_f.readlines() if sum([ord(i)-96 for i in x.strip()])==100])

We can easily get 1297 English words which can make 100%. Beside ‘attitude’, we also have, for example, :


This a scientist’s ‘attitude’: never trust 100%. We have something in the life much more important than just 100%, just like ‘love’=54%.